We've heard for weeks that Ted Lilly will be one of the more attractive pitchers available at this year's July 31 deadline. According to Chris De Luca of the Chicago Sun-Times, Lilly's not the only Chicago southpaw drawing interest either.
Tom Gorzelanny, in the midst of one of his best seasons at the Major League level, is getting some attention as well. He's posted a 3.22 ERA and held opposing hitters to a .242 average through 86.2 innings (14 starts). His 3.33 FIP and 8.7 K/9 support his success, but control is an issue, as he's also walking 4.6 per nine innings.
In contrast, Lilly's overall numbers are weaker than Gorzelanny's, but he allows far fewer baserunners. He's walking significantly fewer hitters (2.1 BB/9) and opponents are batting just .236 off him. Lilly's drawn greater interest, according to De Luca, but the Mets are currently backing down their pursuit. Part of their hesitation lies in the Cubs' asking price for the veteran lefty, but also contributing to their concerns is Lilly's drop in velocity. He's never been a flamethrower, but his fastball is averaging just 86mph, which is down from his career mark of 88.2mph.
Gorzelanny is the cheaper option between the two. He's making just $800K in 2010 and is eligible for arbitration following the season. Lilly is a free agent following the season, and while his no-trade clause is believed to include the Phillies, Twins, and Rays, he's unlikely to block a trade to a contender. His current Type A status is appealing, though he's far from a lock to be offered arbitration.